Saturday, October 12, 2019

[Review] Midsommar

Flowers and sunlight have never felt so ominous...

Ari Aster, director of 2018’s disturbing familial horror saga Hereditary, follows that up with Midsommar, an audacious and absurd exercise in surreal dread.

After an unspeakably grim family tragedy, Dani (Florence Pugh) and her boyfriend (Jack Reynor) take their decaying relationship to a summer trip in rural Sweden. Between the bizarre behavior of the people and the handfuls of hallucinogenics, it doesn’t take an expert to realize that the couple has just stepped into the territory of cult. A really, really messed up one. 

This is the type of film that makes your jaw permanently drop to the ground. This is the type of film that makes you go “What the fuck?” every five minutes. This is the type of film that makes you question the ingredients in your bowl of soup. This is the type of film that will make you never look at bears the same way again. 

What’s so intriguing is that the whole thing takes place during the daylight. The clear-eyed brightness just renders the creepy events as all the more jarring. It’s beautifully shot terror set with a perfectly arranged bouquet of madness. It’s a nightmare under blue skies. A dance of dread. A festival of bedlam. Ari Aster creates a twisted, trippy, and unsettling atmosphere that rivets and intoxicates. It goes from head-scratching to skull-crushing. 

The deeper you get into it, Midsommar blossoms into a grotesque and shocking and even hilarious experience that manages to keep outdoing itself. It’s the rare and radical horror film where darkness would come as a relief. 

* 9/10 *

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